01 Nov The Sudanese Government Rejects a Hybrid Court
From the Sudan Tribune:
The Sudanese government today reiterated its rejection the proposal set of an African Union (AU) to setup hybrid tribunals to try Darfur war crimes suspects.
Speaking to reporters in Cairo the Sudanese presidential adviser Mustafa Osman Ismail said that Khartoum accepts the AU report “in its generalities” and the “African solution for the Darfur crisis”.
Asked about the hybrid courts, Ismail said that his government believes that “justice should be applied on anyone with no exception but at the same time the sovereignty of Sudan and the independence of its judiciary must be respected”.
Ismail said Sudan wants further dialogue with the AU on the judiciary mechanism for Darfur for the purpose of “securing the independence of the Sudanese judiciary and at the same time the necessary transparency to achieve justice on its most noble levels and punishing the perpetrators who committed crimes in Darfur”.
Taha stressed that Sudan has established special courts and appointed a special prosecutor saying that the Sudanese law and competence of judiciary “provides the necessary framework to achieve justice”.
The head of the pro-government Sudanese bar association Fathi Khalil lashed at the recommendations saying it was prepared by circles “hostile to Sudan”.
Speaking to Al-Jazeera TV based on Qatar, Khalil said that only Sudanese courts can bring justice to Darfur rejecting participation of non-Sudanese figures.
Can anyone actually be surprised by this? Has the Sudanese government done anything — literally, anything — to suggest that it would be willing to create a justice mechanism that might effectively prosecute its own officials?
I can only hope that the Sudanese government’s intransigence will motivate the AU to rethink both its promise to protect Bashir from the ICC and its desire for the Security Council to defer the arrest warrant for him. If the Sudanese government is willing to ignore the AU’s resolution calling for the implementation of the Mbeki report, why should the AU continue to defend him?